Back in 2014, Google announced the Android TV operating system for digital media players and smart televisions. Thanks to support from various popular TV manufacturers, Google’s Android TV is currently the most popular smart TV operating system.
A Twitter user from India has discovered a new bug in the Android TV OS that could potentially expose personal photos of users to others that own the same Android TV device. When @wothadei tried to access his Vu Android TV through the Google Home app, he could see the linked accounts of several other individuals who owned the same television. Unfortunately, however, this is not the only bug that he has discovered.
The Twitter user found that he could view personal photos linked to the accounts of other owners of the Android TV device on Google Photos through the Ambient Mode screensaver settings. Another Twitter user has pointed out that the problem may be solved by performing a reset and linking your Google account to the Android TV device. Quite clearly, the bug puts the privacy of several Android TV users at risk.
Oh my god. Private @googlephotos of strangers are being shown to me in the ambient mode screensaver.
— prashanth (@wothadei) March 3, 2019
Based on the responses from other Twitter users, it appears the bug is not restricted to just Vu Android TVs. iFFalcon Android TVs reportedly have the same bug. Owners of Xiaomi Mi TV 4A Pro and Mi Box 3, however, claim that this issue does not exist on their devices. This could mean that this issue is restricted to Android TVs only from a select few manufacturers such as Vu and iFFalcon. Google is yet to provide a response regarding the issue.
In case you aren’t aware, Vu Television is an Indian TV brand based in Mumbai. The Indian brand has a large lineup of TVs across different segments and is currently the highest-selling TV brand on e-commerce platforms in its home market. Apart from India, Vu sells its TVs in nearly 60 other countries.